science art

uses science as its method and/or material — invents theories, plays with models and axioms, evolves paradigms — for the sake of creative expression rather than truth-seeking or reality-describing. A piece of science art — from a puny quasium to a sprawling, generation-spanning metascience — need not hold true in the real world, be complete or even consistent; all it has to do is satisfy our urge of knowing — the evolutionarily youngest motivator that has outgrown whatever the reality-bound science can offer to satiate it. ■    Science art grew from “science fiction” which combined science-like ideas with traditional literary devices: most of its narrative filler — quintessential slack — sank echoless but some of the science art bits from early scifi remain classic; eventually, science art replaced science fiction “when doing science became more interesting than using it.” Lives of historical scientists are another inspiration for science art — this time regardless of whose models “happened to be the case” (now that we know how local and flexible the case may be); silly errors, fashionable delusions, profound understanding failures are the villains of science art plots. Modern sciences inflationary landscape has infinitely more testables than we can ever hope to test: its a “chronic deficit of minds against an oversupply of world” — and the intuitive poetic shortcuts of science art may be our best, or only, clues as to what to look at at all.

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